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Frits Henningsen Three-Seater Sofa by Frits Henningsen, Denmark 1940s

Documentation Documented elsewhere (similar item)
Documentation Notes Bodil Busk Laursen, Søren Matz and Christian Holmsted Olesen, eds., Mesterværker: 100 års dansk møbelsnedkeri, Copenhagen, 2000, pp. 38-39, 136 for a similar example
Origin Denmark
Period 1920-1949
Materials fabric, wood
Dimensions
W. 88.78 in; H. 30.31 in; D. 33.27 in;
W. 225.5 cm; H. 77 cm; D. 84.5 cm;
Seat H. 17.32 in;
Seat H. 44 cm;
Condition Good. In good vintage condition. Wear consistent with age and use. Normal patina due to age and use, including scratches, marks and minor chips. Original upholstery.
Creation Date 1940
Description ‘Danish master cabinetmaker’ or “snedkermester” has become a commonly used term for Danish furniture makers, even though the expression is quite exclusive and only applies to certain craftsmen. Frits Henningsen is justly one of the most renowned master cabinetmakers, with this sofa illustrating why.

The typical elements of Danish modern furniture, the straight lines, the clear design, had developed with time, starting on the long path from the historical style that was still predominant in the 1920s. Architect and furniture maker, Frits Henningsen had a significant role in paving this path. The shape of this sofa model shows Henningsen’s opposition to the younger designers in the 1940s who preferred strictly straight lines. Henningsen on the other hand, believed furniture design needed to maintain curvature which contributed to a homely look. This generous three-seater sofa was designed in this period, and features the uncompromising designer’s personal axioms: a simple, timeless piece that retains its own formal language. Accordingly, the mahogany frame is nothing short of highest quality craftsmanship, most visible in the curved armrests that continue into the front legs. The back and sides of this sofa are all upholstered in an elegant blue fabric that highlights the mahogany frame that visually outlines the sofa.

Henningsen viewed quality craftsmanship as the most important element of his work, making it his focus when developing new furniture. Unlike other cabinetmakers, Henningsen always created his own furniture pieces, and this sofa is no exception, being a true Danish snedkermester piece.
Styles / Movements Mid Century, Modern, Scandinavian Modern
Book References Bodil Busk Laursen, Søren Matz and Christian Holmsted Olesen, eds., Mesterværker: 100 års dansk møbelsnedkeri, Copenhagen, 2000, pp. 38-39, 136 for a similar example
Dealer Reference Number 20200510
Incollect Reference Number 435753
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